According to science, friends can make us happier, healthier, and yes, even more beautiful.
Friends literally make you healthier
In a study completed by Claire Yang, a sociologist at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, she found that people with close social ties had lower blood pressure, body mass index, waist circumference and levels of the inflammation marker C-reactive protein than those that were socially isolated.
They help you cope with rejection and trauma
When life doesn’t go as planned, our friends are there to help us pick up the pieces. In 2011, a study was done on fourth graders and it found that the presence of friends helped kids cope with rejection from other peers. While your friends probably can’t make all of your stress go away, they certainly reduce it (and support you the rest of the way). Find out more about how friends can relieve stress and help you cope.
Friends make hills seem less steep
And not just in a metaphorical sense. In a fascinating study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, participants estimated a hill to be less steep when they were accompanied by a friend than when they were alone. What’s more, the longer the friends knew each other, the less steep the incline seemed.
Friends make you look more attractive
A small study from the University of California, San Diego, suggests that the cheerleader effect—the idea that you look more attractive in a group than you do alone—might be true. When researchers asked 139 college students to rank the general attractiveness of people in a group photo, then to rank one person from the group when shown his/her photo individually, the individual photos were ranked 5.5 percent less attractive. Speaking of which, check out the reason why you and your friends start to look like each other.